What are the characteristics of Victorian poetry?

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The term “Victorian poetry” refers to poetry written primarily during 1832–1901, most of which was during Queen Victoria’s reign. Victorian poems utilize imagery, relying on the senses to get the poet’s message across. The poets naturally depict a great deal of emotion and passion about their subjects. Poets were interested in Medieval legends, which frequently became their topics of discussion. The Victorian poets also show the struggle between religion and science, often revealing their own skeptical feelings about the Church in opposition to the theory of evolution. This type of poetry is known as being realistic, rather than showing an idealistic, perfect world which cannot truly exist.

Realistic themes were important to Victorian poets. For instance, Elizabeth Barrett Browning frequently wrote of women’s role in society. Her epic Aurora Leigh tells the story of a woman fighting to be accepted as a female poet. She says “My soul/ Let go conventions and sprang up...

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